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Tampa Divorce Lawyer

As a loving couple envisions their nuptials, table settings, dinner selections, and locations come to mind. It isn’t likely divorce was part of the planning process. By contemplating the disintegration of the bond so early in the relationship, a dark cloud of pessimism hangs over every argument. But by not considering the possibility of divorce, a person can set themselves up for financial ruin if the union becomes contentious. In a perfect world, the thought of divorce would not enter our minds, but the stark reality is that divorce is a common issue in the contemporary world.

If you feel your marriage may be headed toward a break up, it’s vital that you have a knowledgeable Tampa divorce lawyer at your side to protect your interests and work toward a swift resolution.

The Many Reasons for Divorce

The reasons for a divorce are varied and many. We could not list all of them here. But below are some of the most common reasons for divorce:

  • The environment is unhealthy for the children – In our experience, we have witnessed many relationships stay together for the sake of the children. Spouses are often under the impression that clinging to their marriage is in the children’s best interest. This is not necessarily true because the arguments, bitterness, and resentment can give birth to a legacy the children will bring to their own relationships as adults.
  • Marrying too young – Many people get married too soon and enter a lifelong commitment before they know who they truly are. The journey of self-discovery and personal growth is one your spouse has little to no control over. When seemingly irrational decisions are made as a result of this self-discovery, rifts can be formed that may never be repaired.
  • Trouble with finances – Research has proven that arguments over household finances were a key indicator for divorce. This is irrespective of the couple’s income, level of debt or net worth. The focal point of such disputes is almost always the feeling that one spouse is spending money irresponsibly.
  • Abuse – Taking many forms (physical, financial, sexual, emotional), abuse can be highly toxic to even the strongest relationship.

Tampa Divorce Procedure

Every divorce is unique with its own set of problematic situations.  Though each is different, and laws vary from state to state, there are a few common practices. Keep reading and we will provide you with a high-level overview of the divorce process, but it’s best that you consult with an experienced Tampa divorce lawyer to get a better understanding of the procedure.

The Distinct Types of Divorce

The steps needed for a successful divorce will depend on the relationship. A brief union that has no children and few assets will require less energy to dissolve than one that lasted 30 years, produced five children, and has two homes. So, there are quite a few types of divorce available including:

  • Summary: A summary divorce is for couple who qualify for an expedited procedure. They have few assets, no children, minimal to no joint debt, and had a brief marriage.
  • Uncontested: An uncontested divorce is for couples who agree to the terms and file the paperwork without argument. No need to go to trial with this one.
  • Default: One party files for divorce and the other party does not respond. As a result, the court is now able to grant you a divorce if your soon-to-be ex-spouse is unresponsive. This is common when the spouse being notified can’t be located. Consult a family attorney because this type of divorce has several rules associated with it.
  • Fault and No-Fault: Whether a fault divorce or a no-fault divorce is recognized depends on the state. Florida is a no-fault state, which means that either spouse may seek a divorce without providing any reason other than they no longer want to be married.

There are other forms of divorce as well. If you or your spouse has made the decision to proceed, work with an attorney that can look into your particular situation.

Divorce Procedure

To start the divorce process:

  1. File a petition. This is necessary even if the decision is mutual.
  2. Ask for temporary orders for custody and support if you are dependent on your spouse or have custody of the children.
  3. If you are the party that files the petition, get proof your spouse was served. A qualified divorce attorney can provide this service.
  4. The party receiving the file needs to respond. During this time, he or she can argue the grounds for the divorce.
  5. Negotiate any differences that arise. This is the stage where mediation takes place. If no agreement is made, parties proceed to the next step.
  6. Spouses will have to go to trial if an agreement can’t be reached.
  7. After everyone agrees, an order of dissolution is created that officially ends the marriage and details the division of all assets.

Tampa Divorce Lawyer FAQs

Few things in life are more stressful than a highly contested divorce. A permanent separation is arduous enough, but when a significant amount of assets and children are added to the equation, the situation is virtually unbearable. Along with the emotional trauma and stress, you shouldn’t have to worry about a complex legal system or spend weeks haggling with your spouse. If a divorce is imminent, you should hire an experienced Tampa divorce lawyer who is dedicated to helping you navigate the labyrinth of divorce while staying focused on your best interests.

Understandably, there are hard feelings during the divorce process. It is important for you and your spouse to keep in mind that if you work together or through your lawyers, the procedure will be immensely less distressing for everyone.

To help address any concerns you may have about the divorce process, we have listed the most frequent questions we receive at our office.

Do I have to pay alimony during the divorce proceedings?

Often, one spouse will be ordered to pay spousal maintenance during the divorce. But there are many unique factors to consider, and, as such, every case is unique. Contact us for a personalized discussion of the matter.

In a divorce, who obtains custody of the children?

When it comes to children, two types of custody must be taken into consideration.

Legal custody given to a parent gives him or her the right to make decisions about the children’s education, medical care, and religious preferences. In several states, legal custody is given to both parents.

With physical custody, the children live with the parent. If one parent has sole custody, the other may have the right to visit, but can’t make decisions that would affect the child. Also, the parent without sole custody has no custodial rights.

Throughout this strenuous time, parents will have to find a way to work together to determine who will get custody of the children. A court official will make a ruling if the parents can’t come to an agreement.

How much does it cost to file for divorce?

There are many costs related to divorce due to the numerous factors involved. Filing is one of those costs. The typical cost to file can be as high as $400 and as low as $100 in many locations.

Hire an Experienced Tampa Divorce Lawyer to Fight for You

One of the primary focus areas of practice at The Pawlowski//Mastrilli Law Group is the complicated field of divorce. Our lawyers understand the process can be difficult for everyone involved. We will work closely with you to provide the highest level of service possible during this challenging time. That is our commitment to you. We will examine your case to design the best strategy to ensure you are treated equitably. Contact us today for help.

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